14 August 2013, UK – A staggering 192 hours1 is being squandered by the average British person each year thanks to unnecessary time wasting, according to a new study by computer upgrade retailer Crucial.com. Queuing, being left on hold, waiting for deliveries, and watching a slow computer boot up were amongst the top 2 culprits sapping respondent’s precious free time. Waiting for workmen to show up and public transport delays were also identified as common time wasters.
All this time wasting has consequences. The estimated financial cost is an eye watering £4,800 each year3, with those surveyed complaining of having their time wasted at least three times a week. Furthermore, two thirds of respondents admitted to being left utterly frustrated by wasted time, with 10% stating that the issue left them with feelings of depression.
"So much time in our lives is invested in waiting for things," says Jo Hemmings, behavioural psychologist. "The British sense of ‘correctness’ means that things are expected to happen in a certain way, at a certain time. When that doesn’t happen, we become frustrated because of our own lack of anticipation, especially if waiting for things such as computers to turn on, or if a queue is longer than expected."
Whilst the research suggests that most of this wasted time could be avoided, it also reveals that people are not doing enough to make this happen. A clear example is the ‘Boot up Bother’ issue. While over a third of respondents identified computer boot ups and shut downs as time sinks, only a fraction had actually looked into doing something about it. Only a quarter of those surveyed knew that a computer memory upgrade would improve the speed of their machine, and in many cases, prevent the need to spend more money on a brand new computer.
"Most people in the UK lead busy lives and don’t need their precious time wasted. Although many activities which cause this problem are genuinely unavoidable, a simple memory or SSD upgrade can radically alter a slow computer" noted Roddy McLean, a computer upgrade specialist from Crucial.com. "Installing a memory upgrade or SSD is really easy and takes just a few minutes with no expertise required. A slow computer really shouldn’t be allowed to waste our time."
To reduce the time you waste waiting for a slow computer, find a memory upgrade or compatible SSD, fully guaranteed to fit your system, at www.crucial.com/uk.
Other interesting statistics from this study include:
- 87% of respondents believe that the main reasons we have our time wasted are completely avoidable and unnecessary
- 34% of respondents feel as though they’re often having to wait for things
- Nine in ten respondents believe that as a nation, the UK is becoming increasingly impatient
- 40% of respondents claimed that their computer ‘drives them crazy’ when it runs slowly
- 28% of respondents moan when their computer runs slowly but do not take any action
- 32% of respondents said that the time wasted waiting for a computer to boot up is something they’d ‘love to change’
- Nearly 40% of respondents are more likely to voice computer frustrations when at home
Notes to Editors
1) Average amount of time wasted per person = 16 hours per month. Multiplied by 12 to convert to per year, provides headlined 192 hours each year.
2) Rank Top 5 - List of frustrations:
Percentage of respondents finding these issues waste their time
1 Queuing 48%
2 Being left on hold 44%
3 Waiting for deliveries 24%
4 Slow computers 31%
Joint 5th Waiting for workmen & delays on public transport 30%
3) Respondents were asked how much it would take for them to give up an hour of their time e.g. spend an hour longer travelling to save money. Based on the hourly value respondents gave to figure 2 - an hour of their time was valued at £25. This has been multiplied by the total number of hours wasted each year, figure 1. £25 x 192 hours = £4,800 each yearAdditional information:
Unless otherwise stated, all figures refer to the survey, conducted by The Leadership Factor, polled more than 2,000 people in the UK, aged 18-70.